December 1, 2020

Pastoral Nuggets: Our Actions Matter

Brother-Aaron-236x300Our actions matter. Our choices matter. What we do matters. And what we don’t do matters as well.

In his book: “Mastering the Seven Decisions That Determine Personal Success,” author Andy Andrews tells about one of the network news shows naming Norman Borlaug as its Person of the Week.

Borlaug, had won a Nobel Prize for discovering how to hybridize corn and wheat so it would grow in arid climates such as Africa, Europe, etc., and was credited with saving the lives of two billion people – thus the Person of the Week honor.

Andrews thought to himself: Should Borlaug be credited with this or should it be Henry Wallace? Wallace served as Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Vice-President during his first term.

In this position he created a station in Mexico whose sole purpose was to hybridize corn and wheat for arid climates. He hired a young man named Norman Borlaug to run it.

But should Wallace receive the credit, or should it be George Washington Carver? Before his famous peanut discoveries, Carver was a student at Iowa State University.

While there, Carver had a dairy sciences professor who allowed his six-year-old son to go on weekend botanical expeditions with Carver. That child’s name was Henry Wallace.

Should it then be George Washington Carver who gets the credit, or should it be a farmer named Moses Carver and his wife Susan? George Washington Carver was born in a slave state to a woman named Mary Washington. Moses and Susan Carver didn’t believe in slavery.

Mary Washington lived on their farm as a free woman. Regrettably, an extremists group named Quantrill’s Raiders rolled through the farm one night shooting and grabbing people. One of those people was Mary Washington. Mary refused to let go of her infant child: George. Mary Washington was Susan Carver’s best friend.

Because of this, Moses sent word through neighbors and was able to secure a meeting a few days later with the Raiders.

Realizing that Mary Washington was probably already dead, Moses Carver gave the Raiders the only horse he had left on his farm and they threw him a burlap bag. He took the half dead child out of the bag and put him inside his coat next to him. He gave him his name, and promised to educate him and raise him as his own.

So, there you have it. The actions of Moses Carver influenced the life of George Washington Carver, who influenced the life of Henry Wallace, who influenced the life of Norman Borlaug, who saved the lives of over two billion people!

I close this column today with a reminder to us all: Our actions matter. Our choices matter. What we do matters. And what we don’t do matters as well. We must choose our actions well.

We don’t know the impact our unselfish act, our kind word, our encouragement, our prayer, our touch, our compassion, our smile, or our nod of approval may have. It just may change the world! Conversely, what we don’t do may also change the world! Therefore, we should choose to do to do the right things. Then we should do them as if they matter – because they do!

Brother Aaron

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